Life (1999) Poster

(I) (1999)

Barry Shabaka Henley: Pokerface



  • Pokerface : [on a break; Ray and Claude have just come in]  Either one of you new fellas know how to read?

    Rayford Gibson : I know how to read, why?

    Pokerface : I've been carrying this letter for four months now

    Claude Banks : You mean to tell me none of y'all can read?

    Willie Long : Last fella what could read made parole about, what, Christmas.

    Pokerface : [about his letter]  I don't even know who this come from.

    Rayford Gibson : [takes the letter]  Gimme that shit.

    [turns to old inmate sitting next to him] 

    Rayford Gibson : You can't read?

    [old inmate replies "no"] 

    Rayford Gibson : Almost sixty years old; motherfucker can't read. Here: look, it's from, it's from your mama's neighbor, Mrs. Tadwell, you know who that is, Mrs. Tadwell; she thought you ought to know that your second cousin Bo died, Bo died, and your, and your other cousin Sally on your daddy's side, she died. Oh, and apparently your sister died, too.

    Pokerface : Jenny?

    Rayford Gibson : No, it said Marlene here, Marlene died

    [reads on] 

    Rayford Gibson : ... no no no, Marlene, Jen-Jenny, Jenny died, too, Jenny and Marlene both dead. Then it goes on for a while about how the crop didn't come in on account of the frost, she finished up, there's been a big tornado in which your mama and your daddy were both killed, but don't worry because she's gonna take care of the dog, that is if he gets over the worms; dog had worms.

    Pokerface : Appreciate it.

    Rayford Gibson : Yeah, well you know, any time I can help.

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